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The companion to the beloved bestseller Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, here is the funny, heartbreaking, and powerfully insightful tale that first introduced Siddalee, Vivi, their spirited Walker clan, and the indomitable Ya-Yas.

Topics: Family, Alcoholism, American Author, 20th Century, Female Author, Short stories, Sisters, Heartfelt, Louisiana, Siblings, United States of America, American South, Mothers, Abuse, Child Abuse, Coming of Age, Daughters, Small Town, and Race Relations

Published: HarperCollins on Mar 17, 2009
ISBN: 9780061835148
List price: $10.39
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Availability for Little Altars Everywhere: Novel, A
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I tried reading Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by this author quite a while ago and could not get into it so when I started reading this book I was quite prepared that this was going to go the same way but surprise! - I really enjoyed this book and will now try Divine Secrets again.I loved the characters, especially Chaney and Willetta and found the book to be both heartwarming and emotional. I am so glad I read it.Back Cover Blurb:Little Altars Everywhere offers another look into the turbulent, unconventional and often hilarious lives of the quirky Walker clan of Thornton, Louisiana. Blending postbellum electricity with an off-beat Catholic pedigree, the Walkers take turns imparting the family history, bringing a whole new meaning to the term Southern Gothic.Little Altars Everywhere is often outrageous and wildly funny and yet beneath each comic turn lies the dark reality of life on the Pecan Grove Plantation.read more
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Love everything this author has done. Started with me reading Ya YA Sisterhood, and has gone on from there.read more
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This book is a taste of what the follow up, The Ya-Ya Sisterhood delivers. Rebecca Wells does a great job of pulling the reader into the scene. I sure hope none of this is told from her own childhood memories. Ms. Wells does such a great job building her characters that inspite of all her narcisism, you can't help but like Vivi too.read more
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I tried reading Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by this author quite a while ago and could not get into it so when I started reading this book I was quite prepared that this was going to go the same way but surprise! - I really enjoyed this book and will now try Divine Secrets again.I loved the characters, especially Chaney and Willetta and found the book to be both heartwarming and emotional. I am so glad I read it.Back Cover Blurb:Little Altars Everywhere offers another look into the turbulent, unconventional and often hilarious lives of the quirky Walker clan of Thornton, Louisiana. Blending postbellum electricity with an off-beat Catholic pedigree, the Walkers take turns imparting the family history, bringing a whole new meaning to the term Southern Gothic.Little Altars Everywhere is often outrageous and wildly funny and yet beneath each comic turn lies the dark reality of life on the Pecan Grove Plantation.
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Love everything this author has done. Started with me reading Ya YA Sisterhood, and has gone on from there.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book is a taste of what the follow up, The Ya-Ya Sisterhood delivers. Rebecca Wells does a great job of pulling the reader into the scene. I sure hope none of this is told from her own childhood memories. Ms. Wells does such a great job building her characters that inspite of all her narcisism, you can't help but like Vivi too.
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The first book about the crazy walker family and the unstoppable ya-yas. A must have.
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When I picked up this book, I thought (based on a skimming of the back cover) that it was going to be a charming book about an eccentric Southern Catholic childhood.It wasn't until I actually got the book home that I realized it was by the same author who wrote The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. That was when I assumed that this was going to be one of those women's books. You know the kind of thing: a story where there's this group of women who seem to spend every other page crying and laughing together; there are lots of scenes where their husbands are beating them and demonstrating how stupid men are and then somebody dies and somebody leaves their husband yet the women are still strong blah blah blah. (I'm not a tremendous fan of that genre, as you might be able to tell.)Well, there were a few pages of both of those things. But both of those pre-suppositions were thrown out the window somewhere around page twenty, when I came to a scene of a child watching Lesibans have sex.Mostly this book is about an incredibly screwed-up family. Not funny screwed-up. Not goofy ha-ha screwed-up. Not charming screwed-up. Just SCREWED-UP. I was not really surprised to find that the author of this book is actually a Theatre person. Coming from a Theatre background myself, I noticed she wrote the stories that comprise this book as if they were supposed to be spoken. I also noticed that she designed the stories in such a way that they elicit strong emotional responses (which is the goal of a lot of modern theatre). In fact, I almost take her to task for the latter, because there was almost too much "strong emotional response" eliciting. It is possible to go overboard in this direction, as there's something just a touch empty in a creation that is all "strong emotional response". It's like an action movie that is all explosions and no plot. Explosions sure are exciting to watch, and there are explosions in a few classic movies, but they do not a classic movie make."Strong emotional response" is cheap, which is a lot of the reason why I don't care for a lot of modern theatre. (There are other reasons, but I won't go into that here.)There were many, many times that I just wanted to put this book down - or even just throw it away. There was one point, reading this on my commute back from work, when something so incredibly awful (strong emotional response) was happening in the story that I just wanted to throw the book down on the floor of the train and leave it there with the discarded newspapers and empty soda bottles.Originally, when I began writing this, I thought that the only reason that I went on reading it at that point was that it must be terribly well-written. But, on consideration, it occurred to me that maybe it was just that ploy, the "strong emotional response" scene, that kept me going. Now, I'm not saying there's anything wrong with having an emotional response, nor is there anything wrong with a writer trying to smack you in the face with one to get that blood flowing and keep you reading. And that's why I still have to say that it's a well-written book: she writes a fine scene for causing a strong, emotional response in the reader. There was something very compelling about it that kept me reading in spite of my horror and revulsion (unless I just secretly hate myself and want to feel bad all of the time). So, really, what we have here is a fine example of its type. I've simply had to take a step back and say, "I don't like what it does - but I've got it admit that it's good at it."To sum up - this book was not what I was expecting. I was expecting light, fun, reading material, and it was none of those things. In fact, there were points when I was in ACTUAL, PHYSICAL PAIN while reading this. I definitely would not call reading it "a good time". This is a serious book; probably written for people who had equally screwed-up childhoods and can emphathise with the pain that the characters were feeling. However, this is an EXCELLENT book for studying the structure of a scene that is built to elicit a strong emotional response. I cannot state that more strongly.A Post-Script for Catholic Readers: I can't say much about this as "Catholic" reading material. The main characters (you know, the horrible, horrible, screwed-up family?) are Catholic, but I'm not entirely certain that the author was criticising the Church through them; they weren't really screwed up because they were Catholic. They just seemed incidentally Catholic. However, the author does juxtapose them with a happy, emotionally-healthy family --who are NOT Catholic -- which left me uncertain about the author's views. In the end, I would not tell a person to read this book who wants to read about Catholics; I would only tell a person to read this book who wants to read about screwed-up families. And that's all I have to say about that.
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This book is best read after "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood". It shows the Walker family from the point of view of other family members as well as Siddalee. It starts off light in tone but becomes even darker than "Divine Secrets" towards the end of the book.
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